Albert Einstein may or may not have said “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result.” But whoever did make that observation, it also applies to investing in a new ERP system.
If the current system is not serving your company’s needs and replacement is a serious consideration, it does not make sense to spend untold amounts of money, time, and resources to replace it with the exact same thing. But many companies have done just that – bought a new system, and then proceeded to tailor and/or modify the system to look, feel and operate just like the prior system.
Why would companies do that? The reasons/excuses usually fall into one of these categories:
- This is what the users are used to and they won’t be willing or able to change the way they do things.
- This is the way we’ve been running the company for years and we don’t want to change that.
- Best practices are what everyone else is doing (albeit successfully) and we’re not the same as everyone else – we’re better. (If everything is going so swimmingly then why are you changing systems?)
Unless the replacement project was triggered by an old system going up in smoke (literally or figuratively), and even if that’s the case, a company will want to see some operational performance improvements resulting from this large investment – lower costs, higher productivity, quality improvements leading to more sales, better customer service (leading to more sales or higher margins), etc.
Even if this is a simple, direct replacement for a system that has failed, some of the cost lies in the new features and functions that have been developed and incorporated into the new software since the current system was installed however many years ago. Why choose to not take advantage of everything the new purchase has to offer?